Have you ever heard of the Staffordshire Bull Terrier? Chances are, you’ve probably heard of the name at least a time or two. However, you might not be intimately familiar with the characteristics of this particular breed of dog. Truth is, people often mistake them for other breeds and they get a lot of misconceptions about both them and other breeds of dogs through things other people say or something they read online. In reality, many people learn things about various breeds of dogs, including the Staffordshire Bull Terrier, that just aren’t true. If you really want to know more about the breed, keep reading and find out 20 things about this unique and interesting breed that you might not already know about.
Before you know it, you might be in the market for a Staffordshire Bull Terrier of your very own. One thing is certain, it’s always interesting to learn some of the finer characteristics of different breeds of dogs. This particular breed seems to have a lot of good things going for it, so it makes it a good choice for a lot of people in different types of situations. If you’re still not convinced, continue reading through the list. You might be very surprised at all of the characteristics that are typically found in this breed of dog. By the time you’ve read through the entire list, the thing you’re likely to be most surprised about is that more people don’t own these types of dogs themselves.
Here are 20 cool facts about the Staffordshire Bull Terrier:
1. They’re not afraid of very much
These dogs have impeccable breeding and they’ve been bred for several generations. As such, only the best dogs were bred from the very early stages. Because one of the positive traits breeders wanted them to have was a relative lack of fear, most Staffordshire Bull Terriers are still not afraid of very much to this day. In fact, it’s a relatively rare occasion that you ever see a dog of this particular breed that seems to be scared of anything. Where most dogs are bothered by certain sounds, strangers, or a whole host of other issues, the Staffordshire Bull Terrier seems to take it all in stride without having a desire to run away or otherwise become upset, especially due to fear.
2. They can hold their own
Again, this goes back to breeding. The dogs are bred to be strong and they still hold that trait, even all these years later. These are animals that are capable of producing an immense amount of power and they’re also capable of running much faster than you might think. While they’re not as fast as a German Shepherd or Greyhound for example, they certainly don’t lack speed. When you add their relatively good speed to their level of tenacity, you can almost bet that if they’re really in the mindset to go after something, whatever it might be, they won’t quit until they’ve accomplished their goal. However, that doesn’t mean that these are dogs that should be considered vicious under most circumstances. It simply means that they’re strong enough to handle themselves if and when the need arises and they don’t have a tendency to back down.
3. They’re extremely muscular
One of the things that makes these dogs so good at virtually everything they do is their muscle tone. They are among some of the most muscular dogs in existence. This was another thing that the dog was bred for and current breeders continue to look for the trait in their dogs. Some people even consider the Staffordshire Bull Terrier to be somewhat muscle-bound. In reality, the more muscular examples of the breed can sometimes look like a bodybuilder on four legs. With that being said, they’re extremely strong, as their entire body is typically composed of muscle with very little body fat whatsoever.
4. They’re powerful dogs
As you might have guessed by now, all of this means that this particular breed of dog is extremely powerful. If they want to, they can go virtually anywhere they choose because no one is going to be capable of holding them back on a leash if that particular dog is very determined to get to a certain location. Fortunately, that’s not usually a problem with these dogs. However, it is worth noting that they’re strong enough to easily knock someone off their feet without even realizing what they’re doing. For this reason, they should usually be handled by someone who is physically fit and has at least a moderate amount of experience working with larger dogs as opposed to someone who has only been exposed to small dogs or someone that is fairly new to working with dogs in general.
5. They’re called staffy for short
You have to admit, Staffordshire Bull Terrier is not exactly a name that rolls off the tongue with relative ease. This seems to be an opinion that is shared by most individuals because it didn’t take very long for the dogs to gain the nickname staffy. Apparently, people got tired of trying to say the entire proper name of the breed. Because of that fact and the fact that there are so many other individual breeds of bull terriers, it was necessary to come up with a unique nickname and this one apparently seemed to fit best. Whatever the reason was, it stuck and that has been the nickname of this breed of dog for several years now.
6. They have relatively long lives
For some reason, people get the idea in their head that these dogs have a life expectancy of about nine to 11 years, but that isn’t really correct. While each dog is different and some obviously live far longer than others, the average lifespan for this particular breed is about 12 to 14 years. Some people get these dogs and then are surprised to learn they live that long. As is the case with any breed, it’s always a good idea to do your homework and know exactly what you are getting into before you settle on any dog. This usually means that both you and the dog will be much happier in the long run
7. They’re extremely resilient
Part of their relatively long life expectancy is due to their overall resilience. These dogs are not prone to developing a lot of the diseases that are considered commonplace in many other breeds of dogs. In reality, they don’t usually have a lot that you have to worry about when it comes to the breed in general. Therefore, the dogs have a tendency to remain healthy and relatively active, even well into old age. They’re one of the few dogs that can enjoy both being active and staying calm, depending on the situation. That’s usually one reason that people are so interested in getting one for themselves. That versatility makes them highly sought-after.
8. They look stocky
You might have already guessed for a medium sized dog has a great deal of muscle, these dogs often appear to have stocky build. This usually works well for them, especially when you consider the fact that they’re bred to be strong and powerful. For people that don’t realize what they’re dealing with, it might be somewhat surprising because it’s hard to tell what they will look like as adults when they’re puppies. Some people that haven’t really investigated the breed end up with the dog that is shorter and stockier than they originally thought. With that being said, they’re a beautiful breed of dog that deserve a lot of credit.
9. They’re considered medium sized dogs
This is likely because of their relatively stocky build. A lot of people might have the idea that they’re considered a large dog because they’re so powerful and they do have such great muscle tone, but it’s only on rare occasions that a dog of this breed is large enough to be put into that group. More often than not, this is a breed of dog that is medium sized at best. While they are extremely muscular, as has already been discussed, their legs really aren’t that long. Therefore, they don’t have a tendency to grow nearly as tall as some larger breeds like German Shepherds. With that being said, it’s not all that uncommon to have a dog of this breed that weighs almost as much as a large dog, thanks in part to is excellent muscle tone.
10. They’re often mistaken for pit bulls
Most people have a tendency to take one look at these dogs and mistake them for Pit Bulls. It’s relatively easy to understand why, as the two breeds have a lot of physical characteristics in common. In fact, these dogs look extremely similar to the American Pit Bull. The only real difference in their physical appearance is that they are sometimes a little shorter. In reality, the two dogs are completely separate breeds that are different in many ways. The Staffordshire Bull Terrier has a different temperament than the American Pit Bull and the two even have different ways to metabolize food. Aside from their similar looks, they don’t really have as much in common as most people likely think.
11. They are fiercely loyal
People sometimes choose a dog based on its ability to be loyal. This is a trait that is more important to some owners than to others. Certain individuals want a dog that will be loyal to a particular person or to a particular family and virtually no one else. That doesn’t mean that the owner in question is looking for a dog that will be vicious toward anyone, only that the animal will display a much lower degree of loyalty to other individuals that it doesn’t already know and have a bond with. These dogs have probably cornered the market when it comes to this type of loyalty. They’ll stick with their owners through thick and thin, but they really don’t seem to have many concerns when it comes to other individuals.
12. They have a calm demeanor
This is where things can really get confusing for someone, especially when this breed is confused with the American Pit Bull, which has gained a rather bad reputation without deserving it. One of the biggest differences between these two breeds of dogs is in their demeanor. It’s important to get one thing clear, and that is that the American Pit Bull is not a vicious dog. Vicious dogs are more often than not made, not born. If a dog is vicious, it is likely the result of improper breeding, improper training or a complete lack thereof, and in some cases, abuse. However, the Staffordshire Bull Terrier is extremely calm by nature. Many people say this of the Pit Bull as well, especially those are really familiar with this breed of dog. With that being said, the staffy has a tendency to be so calm that it even makes the Pit Bull look neurotic. It’s easily one of the calmest breeds of dog you could ever own and it doesn’t have a tendency to get excited about much of anything. By all accounts, these dogs just seem to know what to do and when to do it.
13. They like to have a job
This is a breed of dog that really enjoys having something to do. In this particular way, they’re similar to German Shepherds or Border Collies. They need a regular job, something that they believe you depend on them to do. It might be guarding the property or bringing you your socks, but they like to know that they’re actually serving a purpose aside from merely existing. A lot of it goes back to all the years of breeding in these dogs, because they have always been bred for a purpose. Therefore, your dog is likely to be much happier if you give it something to do as opposed to allowing it to lounge around all day long.
14. They take work seriously
These dogs seem to know when they’re actually performing a job and when they’re just being a pet. When they’re working, they tend to have an incredibly serious attitude about things. They don’t become vicious, they just don’t have time for antics. In fact, they’re great working dogs because they do take this part of their lives so seriously. Once you train them to do something and they know what is expected of them, it’s not the least bit uncommon to see them doing it without you even asking.
15. They also like to relax
Like most working dogs, this is a breed that enjoys having the ability to do its job but it gets an equal amount of enjoyment out of relaxation, as long as both of them are in moderation. The dogs are just as good at relaxing as they are at working and they seem to enjoy having the opportunity to experience that balance in their lives, just as many people do.
16. They’re very affectionate
Certain people enjoy having dogs that are more affectionate than others. It’s always important to meet the individual dog in question before adopting or purchasing your dog in order to make sure that its individual temperament works well with your situation and your family. After all, dogs are much like people when it comes to their personalities and as such, every dog is different. With that being said, there are some characteristics about this particular breed that usually apply, although they certainly won’t apply to every dog. Generally speaking, this is a breed of dog that likes to experience affection and then return that experience by showing affection. This makes it a good fit for people that want a sturdy, healthy dog that is capable of performing tasks while still displaying the type of affection that most people get pets for in the first place.
17. They develop strong bonds
The bonds that these dogs are capable of developing with individuals are incredible. Many people are literally astounded by the fact that the bonds that are developed between dog and human are so strong, but it’s really not all that uncommon for this breed. They have a tendency to enjoy being around people and they like to please those that they are closest to. Since they spend an overwhelming majority of their time with these individuals, it’s not at all uncommon for them to build strong bonds with the people that they see most often. Usually, they’ll develop a bond that is strongest with one or two people in the family but they also make great family pets. In many cases, they develop something of a shared bond between themselves and everyone else in the household, effectively becoming everyone’s dog.
18. They were once used for sports like bullfighting
This might be hard to believe but the dogs were originally bred for bullfighting and other types of similar sports. That is why the ideal Staffordshire Bull Terrier is a stocky, muscular dog that doesn’t run away in fear when confronted with a difficult situation. These dogs were bred to be resilient and powerful. They’re not used for these types of sports anymore, thankfully, but they still maintain the overwhelming majority of the traits that they had when they were bred for this specific purpose. In fact, most breeders still elect to maintain the idea of breeding dogs that display all of these qualities because the dogs are simply utilized in different ways today. Those qualities still come in handy, which means they’re still considered desirable in this breed of dog.
19. They look more fierce than they really are
One of the most interesting things about this breed is that they can sometimes have a somewhat menacing look about them. It isn’t because they’re aggressive, not even in the slightest. A lot of it has to do with their overall build and the shape of their head. They also have these intense eyes that can seemingly look right through whatever or whomever they might be staring at. This usually gives most people the idea that the dog would just as soon bite them as anything else, but this is not correct. People probably also think they look fierce because they do bear such a strong resemblance to the Pit Bull, a dog that seems to find itself in the news on a regular basis, giving many people the impression that it is a vicious breed of dog. Because these two breeds look so similar, many individuals think that the Staffordshire Bull Terrier is vicious and they become almost fearful upon merely seeing one.
20. They make good pets
These dogs have a lot of admirable qualities. Because of all of their qualities, they typically make extremely good pets. As previously mentioned, they do best when they have something specific to do but it doesn’t have to be something that requires a lot of physical exertion. The dogs are usually just as happy being trained to perform virtually any task that they can do on a regular basis, especially when you are willing to spend time with them. They tend to like a lot of affection as well as exercise, and they enjoy spending the majority of their time with the person or people they have chosen to bond with. As is the case with virtually any breed of dog, they need to be well-bred and well-trained. This usually creates an excellent dog that is capable of being a good pet and a loyal friend for a number of years.
If you’ve been on the fence when it comes to deciding about getting a particular breed of dog, this might not be a breed that you’ve ever really considered before. Most people just don’t think of them because they’re not as prevalent as dogs like Border Collies or German Shepherds. It’s rather interesting that there aren’t more of them around, especially when you consider their physical and mental characteristics. They have a large number of positive traits, they don’t have a tendency to get sick very often, and they’re relatively easy to train. Therefore, they make good dogs for just about anyone provided they’re given the adequate level of training and you can dedicate the time required to successfully bond with them early on.